Vincent is an ex-soldier with PTSD who is hired to protect the wife and child of a wealthy Lebanese businessman while he's out of town. Despite the apparent tranquility in Maryland, Vincent perceives an external threat.
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Stuck in a dark limbo between life and death, a deceased soldier Nathan Rijckx collects shadows of dying men and women to buy back his own second chance at life. Obsessed by a girl he met ... See full summary »
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In Victorian England, the independent and headstrong Bathsheba Everdene attracts three very different suitors: Gabriel Oak, a sheep farmer; Frank Troy, a reckless Sergeant; and William Boldwood, a prosperous and mature bachelor.
Vincent Loreau (Matthias Schoenaerts), a French Special Forces soldier just back from Afghanistan, is suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. He is hired to ensure the safety of Jessie, the wife of a wealthy Lebanese businessman in his "Maryland" property in the South of France. While he feels a strange fascination for the woman he must protect, Vincent is prone to anxiety and hallucinations. Despite the apparent tranquility on "Maryland", Vincent perceives an external threat...Written by
The film came to life after director Alice Winocour found herself interested in war photographers who talked about the difficult return to normal life, after having seen death and the horrors of combat. One thing led to another and she decided to meet with soldiers coming home from Afghanistan, they talked about their fears, their anxiety, their mental distress and their inner violence. Vincent's character was born from all these encounters. Winocour also told that her inspirations for the film were the images of photographers Gregory Crewdson and Philip-Lorca diCorcia. Each, in their own way, create a fusion between horror film and documentary tradition. See more »
A missed opportunity. But still a solid thriller with some interesting ideas.
I was not sure what to expect with this. But I was definitely intrigued with the two leads, Matthias Schnoenarts and Diane Kruger.
I like a lot of the films that they star in. So it will be interesting to see what their chemistry is on screen.
The premise was definitely one I do not see that often. Also, the story that director and writer Alice Winocaur had put onto screen got me invested. But despite me still finding it reasonably enjoyable, I felt that we have a missed opportunity here.
One thing is for sure, Schoenaerts was great as our main character. A bit like Tom Hardy, most of his success comes from the physical part of the performance. You can really see the killer instinct in his character and his charisma definitely carries this film well. I was feeling his characters problems and I was rooting for him to overcome them. I think without Schoenarts, this could have been something quite boring. The rest of the cast were not that memorable, even Kruger.
For the few action scenes that were on screen, they were really well constructed. You could really feel the hits being taken. The score was fascinating and surprisingly atmospheric. The style felt different, but managed to fit in well with the film. However, there were some moments where I felt the moment to use that score felt unnecessary or badly timed.
Like I said before, there are problems with it. While it may feel slow for the most part, you can feel the tension throughout. You do feel that something does not feel right and we get some well executed action scenes. But I think in the end, the lack of drama and thrills may make people impatient as they know this could go down more interesting routes. I don't get a lot of the slow no-dialogue moments that we seem to see with most of European cinema. It's not often that style gets me totally invested. I was not a fan of the camera-work as well. There was a lot of shaky moments that I felt were unnecessary, and it made me struggle to see what was going on. This negative is a bit of nit pick. But I felt there were too many times when they were reminding us of our main characters anxiety problems. That just seemed to signal to me that they have little more to show and just lingered on that particular part.
For what looked like an interesting premise, for me it did not manage to make the most of it. But don't worry, it still remains to be a solidly delivered thriller with an amazing lead by Schoenarts. The way they portrayed his characters problems on screen was quite clever. I also liked it did not have that cliché feeling at all, and that might be the reason that I remained interested. Despite its problems, I will still recommend this. Winocour should be proud of this. I will definitely check out the rest of her work.
19 of 23 people found this review helpful.
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